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January always brings resolutions as we all have the best intentions to get healthy and stay healthy. The Mattoon YMCA can help everyone in your family as you make being active a priority.

Every January, the Mattoon Y launches the Survivor Challenge. This is a twelve week exercise challenge where each person must meet the minimum number of exercise minutes to stay in the program. Gradually the number of minutes of exercise will increase with each week. The goal is to make healthy activity a habit that you will continue beyond the twelve weeks of Survivor.

With Survivor you choose your activity. You might choose swimming while the next person may enjoy taking a fitness class. Each work out must take place at the Mattoon YMCA or at the Center for Healthy Living-Sarah Bush. At the end of Survivor, every person who has completed all twelve weeks will have the opportunity to win some amazing prizes. Survivor registration is open now and you must be a Mattoon YMCA member to participate. Not a member, but interested? The Mattoon Y is currently waiving the joining fee on all new or renewed memberships. This is the perfect time to save and start your journey to healthy living.

Survivor is open to anyone 14 or older. The challenge is set to begin on January 21st with a Survivor Celebration to be held on April 21st for anyone who completes the program. Survivor Junior will also be available for youth ages 8-13, with an adult participating alongside in the Survivor Challenge. The fee for Survivor is an affordable $6 per person and includes a program t-shirt.

January also brings the return of Family Fitness Classes. These classes are offered in the Y’s busiest months, giving families an opportunity to work out together. Parents set the example for youth, by showing that exercise is an important daily activity and by being a positive a role model. Family Fitness classes will include yoga, HIIT camp, cycling, TRX and PiYo. These classes will be free for Y members while non-members may attend classes for a fee. Please check the Y’s January fitness schedule for a list of family classes.

Another way to start the year off right, is by attending the Sunday Sampler to be held on Sunday, January 14th. This event will include samplings of fitness classes plus information booths for youth and adults sports, a new swim lesson curriculum, personal trainers, membership and the Y’s School Age Child Care program. The event will begin at 1 p.m. and will offer classes for all fitness levels. This Sunday Sampler is open to the entire community at no fee. Child Watch will be available from 1-4 p.m..

Looking for a little more guidance in the areas of exercise, nutrition and handling stress? Check out the Y’s Healthy Start program. With the lead of a certified personal trainer, participants will meet in a small group setting three times a week. Once a week discussion will include: reading food labels, handling stress, proper sleep habits and living healthy. Twice a week the trainer will meet with the group to lead an exercise routine showing safety and proper technique. Because space is limited in this program, only Y members may participate. We encourage anyone interested to join the Y and register for Healthy Start.

To learn more about the Mattoon YMCA and the programs offered, visit www.mattoonymca.org or stop in at 221 N 16th Street, Mattoon for a tour and to visit with staff.

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